Mobility Tricycle Projects

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Mobility Tricycle Projects


In many areas of the developing world, those living with a physical disability have very limited access to personal transportation devices. When devises such as wheelchairs are available, they are often very expensive relative to the local economy and are not designed for the rough, unpaved surfaces found in most rural villages. An estimated 20 million people are in need of an “appropriate” wheelchair (for short distance travel) or tricycle (for long distance travel) that can be fabricated locally and that is designed specifically for typical economic and physical conditions found in many areas of the developing world. Several organizations are currently working to provide these appropriate solutions; in West Africa, one such organization is The Center for the Advancement of the Handicapped in the village of Mahadaga, Burkina Faso.

The Mobility Project partners with The Center for the Advancement of the Handicapped (CAH) to support and further the center’s ministry of providing personal transportation technologies for those with limited mobility. The Mobility Team provides design and manufacturing assistance to fabricators at the CAH in order to reduce cost and improve performance of hand-powered tricycles and develop new mobility solutions such as self propelled electric tricycles.

Purpose statement

Work in partnership with missionaries, staff and clients of the Center For The Advancement Of The Handicapped in order to design hand and electric powered tricycles that can be fabricated, operated and maintained in the village of Mahadaga, Burkina Faso.


  • Partner with The Center For The Advancement Of The Handicapped (CAH) to design hand powered and electric tricycle that meet the following criteria:
    • Simple, appropriate solutions that are cost effective relative to locally available resources
    • Sustainable solutions that maximize the use of locally available materials and value the expertise of local craftsmen.
    • Solutions that promote technology transfer in order to maximize ownership and minimize dependency.
  • Create appropriate documentation, training materials and fabrication aides that will enable transfer of design and manufacturing processes to craftsmen in the CAH workshop.
  • Work directly with CAH craftsmen in order to train them in the manufacture and maintenance of tricycles.
  • Provide long term support to our clients so that they are able to take full ownership of the fabrication and maintenance process.

Current Projects

Electric and hand-powered tricycles

Hand Powered Tricycle

Electric Tricycle


The Mobility team, in conjunction with the Integrated Project Curriculum's Trike Testing Procedure Project, led by Andrew Patton, is planning to start long-term, comprehensive testing of the electric tricycle as a whole. To this end, Trike Testing Procedure Criteria are being drawn up, which will include criteria on which the team wants to test the trike each time it is ridden, and modes of systemic failure which the team wants to periodically inspect and map out, as these system failures progress over time.

It is strongly encouraged that members of this team visit the page above, and make any additions or changes to it that they deem necessary or helpful. The team wants as much input on the criteria of this long-term testing as possible, so that the most beneficial information can be gathered and analyzed about the tricycle and each of its systems.


Past Projects


Seth Betteridge, Luke Herwig, Austin Galaska, Madi Brunk, Luke Barton, Andrew Joy, Michael Joy, John Kreider, Justin Henry, Taylor Eberly, Kari Senum, Lauren Long, John Nordstrom, Rachel Mazurek and Jared Detweiler



Contact Information

For more information about this project, please contact:

Seth Betteridge

  • e-mail:
  • phone: 518-669-9005

John Meyer

  • e-mail:
For more information about this template, please read Help:Project article and Help:Template.
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